How Does Your Game Keep You Contained? Part 1

A lone hero seeks adventure in a dangerous world. In one hand they clasp an ancient sword made from the devil's weirdest nightmares. In the other hand they hold a giant handgun so powerful that it doesn't need to be loaded to kill from two miles away. From head to toe, the hero is clad in armour that prevents… » 8/21/14 1:00pm 8/21/14 1:00pm

Do You Care for Quick Time Events?

I love Quick Time Events. There, I said it. Don't worry; I'm aware that bad QTEs exist. After all, gamers often state categorically that they "love video games" knowing full well that bad games exist. Similarly, I'm fond of Quick Time Events despite the fact that many examples are quite awful. Quite a lot of them… » 8/13/14 12:00pm 8/13/14 12:00pm

School Trips to Game Worlds: A Space Station for All Subjects

Two weeks ago, I argued the case for an educational visit to Rapture. Last week, I set my sites on Neo-Paris. The third video game location I have in mind would probably make for the best school trip ever. » 8/06/14 2:01pm 8/06/14 2:01pm

​School Trips to Game Worlds: Who fancies a Sci-Fi Croissant?

After finishing my first playthrough of Assassin's Creed 2, I was left with a singular thought etched into my mindset. It was not the idea of being an assassin – what it would be like to run across roof troops and leap from inexplicable heights into bails of straw. No, I was left with a strong desire to visit Venice.… » 7/30/14 6:05pm 7/30/14 6:05pm

​School Trips to Game Worlds: Where would you go?

Two weeks ago I was on a school trip in Berlin. Each time I go on this trip (this was the fifth time) a student looks up at the Reichstag building, turns to me and demands to know if that was the building 'they' assaulted at the end of Call of Duty: World at War. Every trip, without fail, and it always makes me… » 7/23/14 6:18pm 7/23/14 6:18pm

​More Reasons to be a Gamer-Teacher

A student once asked me if Richard the Lionheart was ginger (we'd just finished a lesson on the Crusades). I stated that, yes, records show that King Richard I had red hair. The student gleefully announced that he had seen Richard in the city of Arsuf when playing Assassin's Creed. Once again, a video game has… » 7/03/14 4:30am 7/03/14 4:30am

​What Game Can You Always Depend On?

Some of the greatest games only get one play through. Whether the adventure lasts for ten hours or one hundred, or occupies your gaming time for several months, there will come a point where the most entertaining game fulfils its purpose. The story is complete; all achievements are unlocked; each puzzle solved; every… » 6/19/14 4:54pm 6/19/14 4:54pm

Gamer-Teacher: The Execution of Yoshi Cromwell

The stage is set. Mario's desire for a male child is an ever-growing concern. His first wife, Pauline, has failed to produce the heir he craves. Age and stress have taken a toll on her body. Mario wants a new, younger wife that will secure his succession, and the vibrant Princess Peach has presented herself as an… » 6/09/14 2:00pm 6/09/14 2:00pm

Gamer-Teacher: Mario and Henry VIII

I try to be very careful when mixing gaming with education. These are two of my major interests but not every student will appreciate gaming references punctuating every lesson. Nevertheless, a comparison between video game and subject matter is sometimes too tempting to pass up. In the case of the infamous King Henry… » 6/02/14 3:00pm 6/02/14 3:00pm

​Returning to Pokémon: Better to Faint With Honour

In my mind, there are few competitions nobler and more respectable than a Pokémon Battle. Pokémon Blue demonstrated to me that even the wildest creature can conduct themselves with fairness and restraint in each encounter. No words are uttered between combatants, yet each knows there place and fights with the upmost… » 5/26/14 4:00pm 5/26/14 4:00pm

​Returning to Pokémon: confused by Poké Balls.

Last week, I touched on my reactions to Pokémon after skipping four generations. I've enjoyed the game so far but many of the new elements and changes have left me feeling old or confused. Last week I referred to the overwhelming sensation that Pokémon Y seemed to be in much more of a hurry than Pokémon Blue. Whilst… » 5/22/14 11:00am 5/22/14 11:00am

​Returning to Pokémon: Why is everybody in a rush?

I've often found that I respond to new ideas in an open-minded way. I can be relied on the react favourably to change. A shift from the expected norm will not cause be to moan or grumble. If change is for the better, than I can easily get on board. Nevertheless, a lot of change all at once can cause me a few problems.… » 5/15/14 5:01pm 5/15/14 5:01pm

In Need of a Good Home: Which Video Game Creatures Deserve a Second…

In my never-ending journey to the summit of Backlog Game Mountain, I finally reached The Last of Us. It took a long time to get there, but it was worth it. I'd heard great things, and was expecting to find an amazing game. It really is all sorts of amazing. I wasn't however expecting to feel sympathy for the Clickers. » 5/07/14 6:30pm 5/07/14 6:30pm

What video game features would improve your everyday life?

I'm at odds with myself. On the one hand, I would really like to own a grappling hook. Video games have shown me the immense enjoyment of this item. Characters like Batman, Link, Scorpio and even Sackboy all look like they are having the best of times bounding across the landscape using their hand-held winch. I can't… » 5/01/14 5:30pm 5/01/14 5:30pm

​Gamer-Teacher: Video Game Music in the Classroom

During a school day other teachers wander into my room as I teach. Occasionally they will remark on how wonderful it is to hear classical music emanating from a classroom, and how pleasant it is to see students appreciating quality music as they complete their work. As they leave, the students share a collective… » 4/24/14 1:00pm 4/24/14 1:00pm

​Weird Theory: Why Doesn't Link Rule the World?

I'm sure that anyone who has played an instalment of the Legend of Zelda series must admire Link, the protagonist of the series. Whilst there are in fact numerous different versions of Link, with slightly altered personalities and art styles, those who have played will understand that every version of the young… » 4/11/14 7:41am 4/11/14 7:41am

​Gamer Logic: Why walk when I can...

In real life, I am able to walk in straight line, without feeling the need to leap into the air every two seconds. I can park my car between the white lines; I have no impulse to roll out of the car before it has come to a stop. When I catch the train, I make a habit of going as a passenger; I've never thought that… » 3/31/14 1:00pm 3/31/14 1:00pm

The Advantages of a Gamer-Teacher

Teaching is a profession which can blend into your personal time. In my life, video gaming has become something that is scheduled; pencilled in amongst lesson plans and marking. I've not given up on gaming though. Not only because I enjoy it, but because gaming has actually been a benefit to my career. This is why I… » 3/19/14 7:20pm 3/19/14 7:20pm